05 January 2011

Rain hampers construction of new schools in Ipswich's eastern suburbs

Rain has hampered construction work on four new Ipswich schools and the relocated Bremer State High School.

All schools will open when Term 1 starts on January 24, but some work will continue around the school sites as builders rush to finish the projects.

Education officials say students at Woodlinks State School, Augusta State School, Springfield Central State School and High School along with Bremer State High School won't be affected by the delays.

Acting Education and Training Minister Stephen Robertson said the continued delays in construction were caused by ongoing wet weather.

"Parents can be assured the eight new (across the state) and relocated schools will be open for business on the first day of the 2011 school year, and any work areas will be restricted to ensure the separation of students from construction work," Mr Robertson said.

"I've been advised by my department that each of these eight schools will have adequate classroom space and the grounds will be safe for students and staff, regardless of weather conditions over the school holidays."

He said while every effort has been made to complete work on time, projects at other Queensland state schools may also be subject to bad-weather delays.

Forecasters are predicting a 60 to 70 per cent chance of above-average rainfall between January and March 2011, the minister said.

The new Bremer State High School on Warwick Road is a hive of activity, with builders and contractors working around the clock to finish the project.

Located next to the University of Queensland's Ipswich campus, the $76 million school still has plenty of landscaping work to go, but the buildings on the site are finished.

Woodlinks State School, which is located in Collingwood Park, will open as a Prep-to-Year 7 school.

This year the school will have capacity to enrol up to 412 students in 16 classrooms, in addition to their special education centre.

Woodlinks will also feature organic, edible gardens throughout the school with lessons on healthy eating and living to be a part of the learning curriculum.

Augusta State School is located in Bellbird Park and will also open as a Prep-to-Year 7 school.

Springfield Central State School will be a Prep- to-Year 7 school, while Springfield Central State High School will open with Years 8 and 9.

A Department of Education and Training spokesperson said all the schools have received "encouraging" enrolment numbers.

NOTE: The information provided to The Queensland Times by the Education Department is partly wrong.  Augusta State School is located in the suburb of Augustine Heights not Bellbird Park.

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